Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Take two: What is style?

After reviewing my blog posts for the semester, I have come to the conclusion that while my definition of style hasn't changed astronomically after taking this class, my understanding of it has. For example, while I could have pick out bad writing before, I now have the tools and vocabulary to explain and understand why it is bad (thank you, S&W and W). Similarly, while I previously would have be willing to argue for the validity of comic books as an art form/writing style, I now have solid foundations to explain why that is. In addition, this class has given me first hand experience in activities I would have been unlikely to tackle on my own, such as creating a writing technology and re-working a style rule. These projects (and the subsequent reflection upon them) has forced me, in many ways, to broaden my definition writing (and the style rules that define it) and consider the ways in which I use it in entirely different lights.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

peer review recap part 4

So far this semester, we've spent a lot of time reflecting on the peer review process. My initial post on the subject were hesitant, though supportive. My last post on the subject was a bit more critical, as I concluded that peer review was good for an ego boost and catching grammatical errors. After participating in the process for a fourth time, I have to say that I'm only finding it more useless. I still feel that its strengths lie in positive feedback and piddly error correction. As I sat down to write this final review, though, I was struck by how much easier it would have been just to complete the process with pen and paper-- I'm pretty sure I would have received better feedback that way, as googledocs and wetpaint are just clunky editors. Don't get me wrong, I will leave this class with a new love of googledocs-- but for using google docs to share and collaborate, not edit. These programs weren't really designed to do this, and they don't really do it well, and as such some comments that would have been quick in the paperandink world were simply left out, as it would have been more work than it was worth to annotate the document meaningfully or correctly.
Over all, I really like the idea of peer review. However, I think it would be more worth while process if we content guidelines (aka Rubric) to base our judgments on, and perhaps done on paper and not the internet.